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The local housing market through the pandemic

Where it stands now
Posted at 9:00 AM, Apr 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-13 01:38:39-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — No industry has been left untouched by whats happening in the world right now; and that includes the housing market.

Greg McCown, a Century 21 real estate agent in Tucson, said there is definitely a pause in the housing market. However, despite that, he said the market is still strong.

“Its hard to tell what’s going to happen in the future, but I don’t see this causing a huge blip in our market unless it lasts a really really long time, and no one’s expecting it to last more than at least a few months,” said McCown.

McCown said overall prices haven’t changed and folks that need to buy or sell are still moving forward. A lot of those inquiries have been online.

“Some people are saying, ‘Hey, I only want to look at vacant houses,’ which is understandable. Little things have changed like I can open the door, they go in through the house. Maybe I stand in the living room, while they go through kitchen and bedrooms,” said McCown.

He’s done a few tours over Facetime and by sending pictures, but said the timing of the pandemic is interesting because most of the industry was already doing contract signings remotely through programs such as E-Sign.

“I would say 90-percent of contracts that I do and listing paperwork I do, is already by E-Sign. So when this came along it was kind of like, well, now we have to trim off that last 10-percent and do everything by E-Sign,” said McCown.

Another interesting market move is that interest rates are very low.

“I do talk to my lender friends quite a bit, I just got an update this morning from one. And he said, ‘Yeah, for someone that has decent to good credit, FHA is at like the 3.175-percent, which is just absurd. I mean that is extremely cheap money, and conventional is not much higher I think we’re at 3.4, 3.5-percent,” said McCown.

Though McCown says it is still a buyer and a sellers market, it’s still a good idea to wait a few months to see where this pandemic takes us.